Can Sales Excellence Be The Norm?

We know the type of salespeople we need: rockstars. We advertise for them. We know what they look like.

Think about your best salesperson for a moment — a rockstar. Perhaps they do 50-80% of your sales. Imagine if you could develop your entire team to produce at the same level, reports Forbes. What would this mean to your organization, your cash flow, the value of your business or your lifestyle?

These three fundamentals predict sales success:

1. Market knowledge: Does the salesperson know the products and services, the customers, the prospects and the competitors?

2. Market perception: Is the salesperson respected by the marketplace, having access to prospects and customers (a following)?

3. Selling method and mindset: Are you embracing bold vision, bold behavior and the right effort?

We usually hire sales team members who seem strong in Nos. 1 and 2. Then, they either get the job done or they don’t.

When they don’t get the job done, we chalk it up to experience and move the salesperson to another, more suitable position or off the team. But this can be so demoralizing!

The third point above, selling method and mindset, opens the door to a fantastic new possibility: development and transformation. It asks “Can our team be bolder in vision and behavior? Can they be more methodically effective in selling? Will they take a do-or-die approach to getting the job done?”

The focus on a selling method and mindset allows us to transform salespeople, possibly in a short time frame, to achieve exponential growth.

For example, one salesperson with over 20 years of experience in the field, strong in Nos 1 and 2 above, was languishing. But with mindset and skills training, this salesperson tapped his network, asked for introductions, pursued them aggressively, closed them and became salesperson of the year, winning a luxury vacation in Europe. He is now performing at the level of the best salesperson on the team.

This possibility exists for all tenured salespeople. Through mindset and skills, they can experience rapid, explosive growth.

What about the newer team members? It might take longer to get them to the level of the team’s superstar, but with proper development — mindset and skills training — you can put them on a fast path to building their network and closing sales.

What does this entail?

First, they need a do-or-die mindset. Too many of us are raised on a “best-efforts” basis. We learn as teenagers that as long as we give it our best, Mom and Dad are satisfied. Unfortunately, in business development, best efforts usually fail 100% of the time. Do-or-die means you match your efforts and creativity to the task at hand and don’t stop until you achieve it. This can be emotionally and physically exhausting at the outset, but without this skin in the game, successful development is unlikely.

Coach sales team members to the do-or-die mindset through a motivating sales culture. We paint them as heroes in business development because they face and conquer the unknown. The hero culture generates respect and self-respect, a diet on which a salesperson can be nourished for a lifetime of selling.

It takes a hero, in part, because salespeople must overcome the Three Fatal Flaws in selling, which are assuming that the prospect:

1. Is serious: We need to earn the right to a serious conversation versus a price check.

2. Believes what we say: We use proving tools to deal with risk aversion and skepticism.

3. Knows how to make a good decision: We usually need to teach them.

The heroic quest (the journey into uncertainty) is daunting. Typically, heroes need some assistance. Classic myths tell us heroes meet allies on their quest who give them special weapons, like a cloak of invisibility. We must do the same for our sales heroes by supporting them with appropriate tools. Here are some examples:

1. A proving kit to help address the needs of the risk-averse skeptic

2. A book of selling knowledge to guide the salesperson and help brainstorm challenges

3. A standard sales call, the step-by-step process to efficiently warm up the prospect, learn their needs, discover a solution, convince them we have the solution and close.

By coaching mindset and selling skills, we transform salespeople into sales superstars. Then, the only people we don’t want on our team are those who aren’t open to change or improvement.

You can develop a whole team of superstars to transform your business and your life. Operating on this simple metric — more salespeople, properly developed — equals more profitable sales.

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